March Madness is creeping closer as we approach the final week of February. So, here is where KP has each team landing, recapping the week that was in his latest Top 25:
1. PITTSBURGH (25-2)
In two games this week, DeJuan Blair scored 42 points and had 41 rebounds. By the way, that includes a 22-point, 23-board game against 7’3” Hasheem Thabeet and UConn.
2. OKLAHOMA (25-2)
In Saturday’s loss to Texas, the Sooners lost star Blake Griffin to a concussion in the first half (after Griffin scored just two points in 11 minutes), yet fought the ‘Horns down to the wire, proving they deserve to remain the No. 2 team in the country.
3. CONNECTICUT (25-2)
It’s still unclear who, if anyone, will step up in place of Jerome Dyson, UConn’s second-leading scorer, who was lost for the season a short time ago.
4. NORTH CAROLINA (24-3)
The ‘Heels squandered a 16-point lead to the Maryland Terps with just over fourteen minutes to go, while also yielding a triple-double to Maryland’s Greivis Vasquez.
5. LOUISVILLE (21-5)
Terrence Williams scored 37 total points during Louisville’s two solid conference wins over Providence and Cincinnati.
6. MEMPHIS (24-3)
Think Tyreke Evans is getting better as the season progresses? Try 25 points, three three-pointers, eight boards, three assists and three blocks in Saturday’s win over UTEP.
7. DUKE (22-5)
Jon Scheyer and Gerald Henderson combined for 65 points in Sunday night’s confidence boosting win over Wake Forest.
8. MARQUETTE (23-4)
The Golden Eagles have four players averaging in double figures, with star Jerel McNeal posting twenty per game.
9. MICHIGAN STATE (21-5)
In Tuesday’s 18-point road loss to Purdue, Kalin Lucas and Raymar Morgan combined to shoot 3-of-16 from the field.
10. WAKE FOREST (20-5)
While everyone talks about Jeff Teague, Wake also features James Johnson and Al-Farouq Aminu—two forwards who each average approximately 13 points and eight rebounds a game.
11. CLEMSON (22-4)
In Tuesday’s 29-point blowout win over Maryland, the Tigers scored 59 points in the second half.
12. VILLANOVA (22-5)
The Wildcats had six players score in double figures during Sunday’s 89-86 win over Syracuse.
13. MISSOURI (23-4)
Aside from their two conference losses, the Tigers have only lost two other games, both to ranked teams in Illinois and Xavier—by a combined total of ten points.
14. ARIZONA STATE (21-5)
Three-point specialist Rihards Kuksiks saved the Sun Devils Sunday night by draining two shots from behind the arc in the final three minutes of the game.
15. PURDUE (21-6)
With Robbie Hummel seeing significant court time again, the Boilers have run off four straight wins, including a dominant victory over Tom Izzo’s Spartans on Tuesday.
16. KANSAS (22-5)
Does anyone else think Bill Self deserves some Coach of the Year love for the job he’s done after losing so many pieces to last year’s championship team?
17. GONZAGA (21-5)
The ‘Zags have quietly won 13 of 14, including two conference victories last week by a combined 71 points.
18. XAVIER (22-5)
Leading scorer Derrick Brown was 1-for-8 from the floor on Sunday, but eleven Xavier three-pointers helped knock off conference bottom-dweller George Washington.
19. FLORIDA STATE (21-6)
Has anyone noticed that the ‘Noles are tied for second in the ACC? Wins over Va. Tech and Miami made for a solid week, but an upcoming stretch of road games at BC and Duke, then a contest at home against Clemson will show what Florida State is really made of.
20. LSU (23-4)
The Tigers haven’t lost a conference game since their opener at Alabama, but the upcoming week features a home game with the Florida Gators, plus a trip to Rupp Arena to take on the Kentucky Wildcats.
21. ILLINOIS (22-6)
The loss to Penn State early last week was about as ugly as it gets, shooting only 30 percent from the floor (including 3-of-16 from behind the arc), in a 38-33 loss.
22. UCLA (20-7)
The Bruins' win over Washington at the beginning of last week keeps them in the polls, but the more you watch this team, the more you think that Final Four streak is likely to be over this season.
23. WASHINGTON (20-7)
As the Pac-10 leader this season, the Huskies are a nice surprise. This week, an unwelcome surprise could appear with both Arizona State and Arizona coming to town.
24. BUTLER (23-4)
The Bulldogs avoided a three-game losing streak by holding Stephen Curry to just 6-for-23 shooting in a 75-63 win over the Davidson Wildcats.
25. TEXAS (18-8)
Say what you want about beating a Griffin-less OU team, but it’s still a hard-fought win over one of the best teams in the country. The victory is also one that earns the ‘Horns a spot back in KP’s Poll this week, narrowly beating out West Virginia, Penn State, and Utah.